Archives

October 2003

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Oct 31

I like Javier Tles’ style, especially his personal work.
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Oct 31

If you’ve ever seen a Minox camera and you haven’t gallen in love with it something is wrong with you. Seriously. It’s the photographic equivalent of Bang-Olufsen audio equipment: Nice design and technology but quite expensive and more or less… well… useless. The negative is tiny which makes grain an issue. And who wants to fiddle with a camera that is so small that loading the film requires a *lot* of patience and pretty small fingers? Minox cameras are still made by the company. Actually, Minox makes more than just the little spy camera but when people say Minox they’re talking about the “spy” camera. You need special processing because of the size of the film; an easy way to deal with that is to buy film and processing mailers through BH Photo. More infos about the various Minox models can be found on the Minox Encyclopedia of the Minox Historical Society.
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Oct 30

Frequent readers of this weblog will have noted that I usually don’t link to sites with tutorials on how to manipulate digital images. I’m going to make an exception today. This morning, my wife asked me how I’d restore old, faded photos. Even though I more or less knew how to do it I went looking for something online: Needle in a haystack! The signal-to-noise ratio of the web has become quite abysmal. For every useful page you’re flooded with tons of ads and pages where people try to sell you some crap. Anyway, after a while I found this page and I thought I’d link to it here coz it might come handy.
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Oct 29

Am I the only one thinking that Spencer Tunick’s work is nothing more than the photographic equivalent of the Piss Christ?
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Oct 28

Julian Thomas was careless enough to send me email which made me check out his work.
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Oct 27

“Especially in a time in which the values of reading and inwardness are so strenuously challenged, literature is freedom.” - Susan Sontag, concluding her acceptance speech for the Friedenspreis des Deutschen Buchhandels award. [“Two weeks ago during the Frankfurt Book Fair, the Association of German Publishers and Booksellers awarded the Friedenspreis des Deutschen Buchhandels (the Peace Prize of the German Book Trade) to Susan Sontag. She was cited for standing up for ‘the dignity of free thinking’ and for her role as an ‘intellectual ambassador’ between the United States and Europe.”]
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Oct 27

Lowest daily wage paid to undocumented workers at Walmart (in 21 states): $2 Number of members of the Walton family in the Forbes Top Ten of the U.S.’s wealthiest citizens: 5 sources: 1, 2
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Oct 27

Bruce Charlesworth’s staged photography is - depending on your disposition - either quite amusing or unsettling.
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Oct 27

František Drtikol (1883-1961) “is most noted for his uniquely modernistic imagery through the use of harsh lighting and strangely contorted forms and backdrops. His primary subject was the female nude. Most of these images were made between 1900 and 1935.” Examples: gallery, gallery 2, gallery 3.
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Oct 24

I’m not sure what to make of Nicole Tran Ba Vang’s digital manipulations. You be the judge.
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Oct 23

Robert Vizzini specializes in night-time photography.
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Oct 22

It probably can’t get any more complicated than this: Should there be a book with photos of what German cities looked like after they were destroyed by bombers during World War II? “‘We’ve all seen the pictures of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. But these (new) images are not part of the iconography of the war,’ says historian Joerg Friedrich, who compiled the book. […] Mr Friedrich collected the photos from town archives across Germany while touring the country last year presenting a book about the Allied bombing. That book, The Fire, caused controversy both here and in Britain by suggesting the air campaign may have been a war crime. ‘Can you show the body parts of bomb victims collected in bathtubs? The charred corpses of women, who crouched to the floor in a desperate search for oxygen?’ asked Die Welt newspaper. […] a cultural magazine programme on ARD public television wrote it off as a ‘provocation’ that sought to ‘compare the air war with the Holocaust’. Mr Friedrich says the decision to publish the photos was not easy. In the end, the former German Chancellor Helmut Kohl played a part in convincing him - with the proviso that British, Dutch, Polish and other civilian victims of air warfare also be portrayed.” (full story; images)
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Oct 20

Masumi Hayashi’s website currently “focuses on a body of work that deals with the internment of Americans of Japanese ancestry during World War II. Hayashi’s panoramic photo collages show the remnants of sites of Japanese American Internment camps during World War II, an archeological memory.”
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Oct 19

In the most recent edition of The Nation, there’s an excellent review of five books about Israel. The review goes way beyond the usual superficial stuff you usually hear - especially on the news that, following politicians’ examples, show the world as black and white. Recommended!
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Oct 18

Have a look at the paintings by Alex Kanevsky.
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Oct 18

It’s hard to be a provocative artist these days, isn’t it? We had the “Piss Christ” - which, entirely predictably, pissed of fundamentalist Republicans - and we’re getting our daily dose of sex every day, like when our next-door neighbour receives a Victoria’s Secret catalogue in the mail and we can’t refrain from having a brief peek. Enters Belgian artist Wim Delvoye who “invited Belgian friends to paint parts of their bodies with small amounts of barium and then have sex in actual medical clinics.” Oh, the glory of European health care! Wim Delvoye then turned the so-called “sex-rays” (how witty!) into mock church windows - some of which you can see here - and into (sort of) old-fashioned prints - some of which you can see here. Please note that if you’re one of those ultra-fundamentalists the photos are as (s)explicit as it gets - a statement that, I’d like to add, isn’t supposed to say anything about their actual value. I think some of those prints got shown in New York City but, how unfortunate for the artist!, people must have been too obsessed with their “war on terrorism” to get offended. Or maybe next time Wim Delvoye should explore religion coz, you know, photos about sex are so yesterday.
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Oct 18

Soviet-Russian cameras has a lot of information about cameras made in Russia or the former Soviet Union (incl., unfortunately, a silly rant about “Why I don’t like LOMOgraphy”: “It’s a capitalist conspiracy.”). (thru consumptive.org)
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Oct 18

Dublog, which appears to be hopefully only in sleep mode right now, featured Carbon Dust Illustrations of Beetles a while back. Insect Tectonics is the high-tech equivalent: Electron microscope images of insects. Stunning.
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Oct 17

All about Thomas Bernhard, one of my favourite authors. If you don’t know Bernhard and are curious: Try to imagine Philip Roth’s “Portnoy’s Complaints” minus the sex plus more generalized discussions (and rants) about people and human interactions plus an immense hatred of all things Austrian. Good starting point to read: “Woodcutters” (another translation is called “Cutting Timber: An Irritation”). Another fabulous book (albeit a tough one to read): “The Lime Works”. (thru wood s lot)
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Oct 16

Doctor Foxglove’s Polaroid Triptych Project (thru 12.s)
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Oct 16

While being in Frankfurt, I went to see an exhibition of 15 of Andy Warhol’s Time Capsules at the utterly fabulous Frankfurt Museum for Modern Art (more information). That show is a total must for anybody who’s even remotely interested in modern art.
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Oct 16

This is going to be the first entry about my most recent traveling, to Germany and France. It’s a bit more personal than the other ones which will be (slightly unusual) travel photos only.
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Oct 4

Ever wanted to play with a theremin? Try BBC’s virtual one! (this thru the weblog currently known as 12.s)
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Oct 3

Michael Wesely has been doing all kinds of photographic experiments and I’m having a very hard time to decide which one I like the most. His long-term exposures (see above) are totally stunning, as are his abstract photos (“abstractions”).
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Oct 3

Marco Breuer’s photos are much closer to what people might consider as actual pieces of artwork than most other photos. He literally works on the photographic paper using all kinds of techniques.
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Oct 3

Another recommendation - provided you like somewhat experimental electronic music: So have just released their first album which is also called “So”. There’s a sound sample on that page so you might want to give it a listen.
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Oct 2

“Madonna is being sued by the son of a French fashion photographer [Guy Bourdin] who has accused her of imitating images created by his father.” (story) If you want to judge for yourself, check out this comparison of stills from Madonna’s video and of photos by Guy Bourdin. The similarities are quite obvious; in particular since the poses of the models in Bourdin’s photos are not your everyday poses. Needless to say, this lawsuit is particularly spicy in the light of Madonna’s attacks on people who copy here music illegally. Nothing but some good old hypocrisy, eh?
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Oct 2

While I was in London this past Sunday, waiting for my connecting flight back from blackout’ed Italy to the US, I picked up a new magazine called Zembla. Zembla has a stupid name but that’s the only bad thing you can say about it. It’s filled with great stuff about literature and its design is quite stunning. If you have the chance check it out. Oh, that webpage doesn’t contain much, yet, but I’m sure that is going to change.
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Oct 2

Stahl Art is a website by Harald Finster that shows photos of old industrial sites. (thru what a few days ago was called a most curious marmoset)
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Oct 2

“The starting point of the series Pantone 721 is teenager’s dissatisfaction with their appearance. [Astrid] Vredegoor asked the teenagers which part of their face they would like to change. She then fulfilled their wished by means of a computer face-lift.”
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Oct 2

Danish photographer Michael Staggemeier shows us examples of how to take photos that don’t have much in them.
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Oct 1

There’s an amusing article on The Luminous Landscape about what all you need in your photo bag.
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Oct 1

The German in me likes Derek Shapton’s photos best when there are no people in them. His personal projects are absolutely gorgeous.
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Oct 1

“Already in the Middle Ages the village mosques in Mali and adjoining regions were being built of mud.” Sebastian Schutyser went to take photos of them.
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